When in Rome - We 'did as the Romans did' - visited the Vatican, Forum, Colosseum, St. Peter's, Sistine Chapel, Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, and I closed my eyes while we rode in some very fast moving taxis. Our feet were sore after 3 days of some very serious walking, and, did I mention the pasta, cheese, wine and gelato?
The Forum and City Hall
Then on to Venice, it was so nice to escape from the fast moving cars and taxi's for 2 days. So much water and beautiful glass art everywhere. Our room overlooked a canal that was filled with gondola's and wonderful music. Although we didn't spend a lot of time there, it was a beautiful view - - -
View from our room window
Words cannot describe Venice at night - it is truly magical
Then it was our week to explore the Tuscan countryside. Our rustic but wonderfully modern villa was perfectly perched on a hillside and we could see Montalcino in the distance. We visited Montalcino, Siena, Pienza, Montepulciano, Volterra, San Angelo, St. Antimo cathedral, Bagno Vignoni hot springs, Asciano and the abby at Monte Oliveto Maggiore. One day we got lost on purpose and ended up at the unbelievably huge Banfi winery.
It was very warm with record setting heat everyday of our trip. The days were sun filled and hot but the nights were very comfortable. We needed our air conditioning at night while in the cities but did not need it in Tuscany.
The entrance to our Tuscan villa. Each room had a beautiful view of the rolling hills
Absolutely some of the most beautiful landscapes we have ever seen !
Every morning we visited with our friendly neighbors who were very happy to see us and our carrots.
And everyday we discovered new places more beautiful than the last.
One night Ed had dinner with a 'boar' - - - and I enjoyed gelato in Siena - - -
Our last three days were in Florence. We enjoyed seeing the gigantic Uffizi Gallery and also visited Accademia where Michelangelo's famous impression of David is proudly displayed. We visited the huge street market and fresh food market, the beautiful Duomo and Santa Croce church and strolled across the romantic Ponte Vecchio bridge.
'Mirror view' from the Ponte Vecchio bridge
Spectacular art inside the Duomo Dome
The overwhelming amount of history, wonderful art, religious symbolism and sheer beauty in this part of Italy was inspirational and breath taking at times. This was truly a wonderful life changing vacation.